The Biggest Myths and Misconceptions about Hiring a Medical Malpractice Attorney?

by Zelick Glimelstein on March 7, 2014

When it comes to hiring a medical malpractice attorney, what kind of questions run through your mind?  What type of feedback have you heard from your family members, friends, and work colleagues?  Do you buy into the hype that medical malpractice lawsuits are almost always impossible to win?  If you do, it’s high time you learned the truth about medical malpractice attorneys.

You Have It All Wrong

Misinformation can prevent you from getting the compensation that you deserve.  Hiring an attorney doesn’t have to be daunting.  Many skilled professionals have what it takes to legally represent you or a family member in the event that something went awry medically during a routine procedure or surgery.

Some of the biggest myths and misconceptions about hiring a medical malpractice attorney include:

  • They’re too expensive so therefore not worth dealing with.
  • Almost all malpractice lawsuits are settled outside of court.
  • An attorney only cares about making money not about you and your injuries.
  • You’ll be the target of harassment if you go after a medical professional.

Although valid concerns, the aforementioned list is unmerited.  Attorneys are in the business of helping people.  That’s why they work so closely with you to determine whether or not you have a case worth pursuing.  They make sure that you get fair representation so that the insurance company won’t try to settle with you before you know the full extent of your injuries.

Interview Potential Candidates

Medical Malpractice Attorney

All speculation aside, hiring a seasoned professional is far easier than you think.  The best thing a person can do before searching for an attorney is to do a bit of research.  Schedule a free consultation and ask some of the hard questions.  Inquire about the attorney’s past and how many medical malpractice lawsuits he or she has won.  Ask what type of education they received and the credentials that he or she possesses.

Last but not least, you’ll want to know what the attorney can do for you.  After all, you need excellent representation throughout the legal process.  Treat your initial meeting like an interview.  If you don’t feel comfortable working with an attorney for one reason or another, find another candidate in your area.

To gain a better understanding about medical malpractice, it’s important to know how to legally define it.  As with any other type of service, people are not always going to be happy with the outcome of a surgery or procedure.  Although they may feel like a healthcare provider is at fault that is not necessarily the case.  A doctor must be proven unskilled or incompetent and the patient must have been visibly harmed because of the medical professional’s negligence.

What is Medical Malpractice?

Medical Malpractice

According to US Legal, “Medical malpractice is the failure of a medical professional to follow the accepted standards of practice of his or her profession, resulting in harm to the patient. Usually, proof of failure to comply with accepted standards of medical practice requires the testimony of someone with expertise in the area of medical practice. Some states have special evidentiary rules applicable to malpractice claims.”

Proving That Malpractice Occurred

The National Institutes of Health (NIH) notes that four legal elements must be present in order to prove malpractice.  The first is a professional duty owed to the patient.  The second is breach of such duty.  The third is an injury caused by the breach and the fourth is that the injury has resulted in damages.  If monetary compensation is granted, economic loss and noneconomic loss in the form of pain and suffering is accounted for.

You don’t have to suffer in silence.  The right attorney can provide you with the representation needed to win a medical malpractice suit.  Spend an afternoon “interviewing” candidates and find the right lawyer to meet your needs.  You’ll be glad that you took the time to do your research.

About the Author – 
Joseph G. Macaluso is a personal injury lawyer practicing at the Bronx law firm of Macaluso & Fafinski, P.C. A graduate of Brooklyn Law School, Mr. Macaluso has been in private practice since 1990 with an exclusive focus on personal injury and medical malpractice. A member of the New York State Trial Lawyers Association, he has served on the Legislative Committee of this organization and is also a member of the Bronx County Bar Association and has served on the Board of Directors of Bronx Legal Services.

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